The quality of radiotherapy treatment plans varies across institutions and depends on the experience of the planner. For the purpose of intra- and inter-institutional homogenization of treatment plan quality, we present an algorithm that learns the organs-at-risk (OARs) sparing patterns from a database of high quality plans. Thereafter, the algorithm predicts the dose that similar organs will receive in future radiotherapy plans prior to treatment planning on the basis of the anatomies of the organs. The predicted dose provides the basis for the individualized specification of planning objectives, and for the objective assessment of the quality of radiotherapy plans.
Antisynthetase syndromes are a subset of the idiopathic inflammatory myopathies characterised by the presence of autoantibodies to aminoacyl transfer-RNA synthetases (ARS) and monotypic clinical features including Raynaud phenomenon, fever, non-erosive inflammatory arthritis and hyperkeratotic skin changes ('mechanic's hands'). Interstitial lung disease (ILD) is particularly common in ARS syndromes, affecting up to 90% of patients.
One of the most consistent neuropsychological findings in autism spectrum disorders (ASD) is a reduced interest in and impaired processing of human faces. We conducted an activation likelihood estimation meta-analysis on 14 functional imaging studies on neural correlates of face processing enrolling a total of 164 ASD patients. Subsequently, normative whole-brain functional connectivity maps for the identified regions of significant convergence were computed for the task-independent (resting-state) and task-dependent (co-activations) state in healthy subjects. Quantitative functional decoding was performed by reference to the BrainMap database. Finally, we examined the overlap of the delineated network with the results of a previous meta-analysis on structural abnormalities in ASD as well as with brain regions involved in human action observation/imitation. We found a single cluster in the left fusiform gyrus showing significantly reduced activation during face processing in ASD across all studies. Both task-dependent and task-independent analyses indicated significant functional connectivity of this region with the temporo-occipital and lateral occipital cortex, the inferior frontal and parietal cortices, the thalamus and the amygdala. Quantitative reverse inference then indicated an association of these regions mainly with face processing, affective processing, and language-related tasks. Moreover, we found that the cortex in the region of right area V5 displaying structural changes in ASD patients showed consistent connectivity with the region showing aberrant responses in the context of face processing. Finally, this network was also implicated in the human action observation/imitation network. In summary, our findings thus suggest a functionally and structurally disturbed network of occipital regions related primarily to face (but potentially also language) processing, which interact with inferior frontal as well as limbic regions and may be the core of aberrant face processing and reduced interest in faces in ASD.
G72 (syn. DAOA, D-amino acid oxidase activator) is a susceptibility gene for both schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Diffusion tensor imaging studies hint at changes in fiber tract integrity in both disorders. We aimed to investigate whether a G72 susceptibility haplotype causes changes in fiber tract integrity in young healthy subjects. We compared fractional anisotropy in 47 subjects that were either homozygous for the M23/M24 risk haplotype (n = 20) or homozygous for M23(rs3918342)/M24(rs1421292) wild type (n = 27) using diffusion tensor imaging with 3 T. Tract-based spatial statistics, a method especially developed for diffusion data analysis, was used to delineate the major fiber tracts. We found clusters of increased FA values in homozygous risk haplotype carriers in the right periinsular region and in the right inferior parietal lobe (IPL). We did not find clusters indicating decreased FA values. The insula and the IPL have been implicated in both schizophrenia and bipolar pathophysiology. Increased FA values might reflect changes in dendritic morphology as previously described by in vitro studies. These findings further corroborate the hypothesis that a shared gene pool between schizophrenia and bipolar disorder might lead to neuroanatomic changes that confer an unspecific vulnerability for both disorders.
Patients with borderline personality disorder (BPD) suffer from various impairments in emotional functioning such as affective instability, inappropriate anger and unstable relationships. These deficits may influence two fundamental motivational systems, the behavioral inhibition system (BIS) and behavioral activation system (BAS). To investigate behavioral intentions and possible impairments in BPD we applied an implicit joystick task to measure implicit behavioral tendencies in response to facial expressions (happiness, sadness, anger, fear and neutral) in 25 patients with BPD and matched 25 healthy controls (HC). Additionally, we evaluated explicit approach and avoidance reactions to these social stimuli, emotion recognition abilities and subjective behavioral ratings. Our data analysis suggests that, although BPD patients accurately identified facial emotional expressions and reacted to them similarly as HC in the joystick task, they had significantly stronger avoidance tendencies in the rating task, especially for happiness and fear. On top of this they exhibited increased BIS sensitivity and decreased BAS sensitivity in the self-report measures. Possible influences are maladaptive cognitive schemas, high negative affect, insecure attachment style and a negative evaluation bias. The observed dysfunctional avoidance ratings may influence the appraisal of socially relevant stimuli and therefore adds further knowledge on social interaction problems in BPD.
The most effective treatment of Parkinson's disease (PD) L-DOPA is associated with major side effects, in particular L-DOPA-induced dyskinesia, which motivates development of new treatment strategies. We have previously shown that chronic treatment with a substantially lower dose of deuterium-substituted L-DOPA (D3-L-DOPA), compared with L-DOPA, produced equal anti-parkinsonian effect and reduced dyskinesia in 6-OHDA-lesioned rats. The advantageous effects of D3-L-DOPA are in all probability related to a reduced metabolism of deuterium dopamine by the enzyme monoamine oxidase (MAO). Therefore, a comparative neurochemical analysis was here performed studying the effects of D3-L-DOPA and L-DOPA on dopamine output and metabolism in 6-OHDA-lesioned animals using in vivo microdialysis. The effects produced by D3-L-DOPA and L-DOPA alone were additionally compared with those elicited when the drugs were combined with the MAO-B inhibitor selegiline, used in PD treatment. The different treatment combinations were first evaluated for motor activation; here the increased potency of D3-L-DOPA, as compared to that of L-DOPA, was confirmed and shown to be of equal magnitude as the effect produced by the combination of selegiline/L-DOPA. The extracellular levels of dopamine were also increased following both D3-L-DOPA and selegiline/L-DOPA administration compared with L-DOPA administration. The enhanced behavioral and neurochemical effects produced by D3-L-DOPA and the combination of selegiline/L-DOPA are attributed to decreased metabolism of released dopamine by MAO-B. The similar effect produced by D3-L-DOPA and selegiline/L-DOPA, respectively, is of considerable clinical interest since D3-L-DOPA, previously shown to exhibit a wider therapeutic window, in addition may reduce the need for adjuvant MAO-B inhibitor treatment.
Patients with pneumothorax occasionally require limited lung resections to control persistent air leaks. In some patients, especially smokers, histopathologic findings suggest that a ruptured bulla or bleb caused the pneumothorax. Other patients only exhibit histopathologic changes related to the physical trauma of acute, and likely occult recurrent, peripheral lung injury in the setting of "spontaneous," or idiopathic, lung rupture. Sometimes, pneumothorax occurs secondary to an underlying localized or diffuse parenchymal lung disease. A comprehensive description of the morphologic findings that may be seen in these specimens will help the surgical pathologist distinguish patients with more common and indolent occurrences of pneumothorax from those requiring additional workup or treatment.
Rupture of the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) is a high incidence injury usually treated surgically. According to common knowledge, it does not heal spontaneously, although some claim the opposite. Regeneration therapy by Khalifa was developed for injuries of the musculoskeletal system by using specific pressure to the skin. This randomized, controlled, observer-blinded, multicentre study was performed to validate this assumption. Thirty patients with complete ACL rupture, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) verified, were included. Study examinations (e.g., international knee documentation committee (IKDC) score) were performed at inclusion (t 0). Patients were randomized to receive either standardised physiotherapy (ST) or additionally 1 hour of Khalifa therapy at the first session (STK). Twenty-four hours later, study examinations were performed again (t 1). Three months later control MRI and follow-up examinations were performed (t 2). Initial status was comparable between both groups. There was a highly significant difference of mean IKDC score results at t 1 and t 2. After 3 months, 47% of the STK patients, but no ST patient, demonstrated an end-to-end homogeneous ACL in MRI. Clinical and physical examinations were significantly different in t 1 and t 2. ACL healing can be improved with manual therapy. Physical activity can be performed without pain and nearly normal range of motion after one treatment of specific pressure.
Changes in fiber tract architecture have gained attention as a potentially important aspect of schizophrenia neuropathology. Although the exact pathogenesis of these abnormalities yet remains to be elucidated, a genetic component is highly likely. Neuregulin-1 (NRG1) is one of the best-validated schizophrenia susceptibility genes. We here report the impact of the Neuregulin-1 rs35753505 variant on white matter structure in healthy young individuals with no family history of psychosis.
Second cancer risk after breast conserving therapy is becoming more important due to improved long term survival rates. In this study, we estimate the risks for developing a solid second cancer after radiotherapy of breast cancer using the concept of organ equivalent dose (OED).
The use of IORT as a treatment modality for patients with close or positive margins has increased over the past decade. For situations where a flat area (up to 6 cm in diameter) has to be treated intraoperatively, new applicators for superficial treatment with a miniature X-ray source (INTRABEAM system) were developed. Here we report our evaluation of the dosimetric characteristics of these new applicators and their first clinical use. Each of these flat and surface applicators consists of a radiation protective metal tube and a flattening filter, which converts the spherical dose distribution of the X-ray source into a flat one. The homogeneity of each dose distribution and depth-dose measurements were evaluated using film dosimetry in a solid water phantom and a soft X-ray ionization chamber in a water tank. The first patient was treated with 5 Gy delivered in 5 mm using a 4 cm FLAT applicator over 21 minutes. The flat applicators show the maximum homogeneity, with a uniformity ratio of 1.02-1.08 in certain depths. In 1 mm depth surface applicators show a uniformity ratio of 1.15-1.28. They also show a higher dose rate and a steeper dose gradient compared to the flat applicators. The results of this investigation demonstrated that the flat and surface applicators have unique dosimetric characteristics that need to be considered during the treatment planning stages. This work also showed that it is possible to perform a superficial localized IORT which provides new application possibilities for use of the INTRABEAM system.
The pulmonary histopathologic manifestations of the antisynthetase syndromes is poorly understood and reported. Eight cases of interstitial lung disease related to the presence of antitheonyl (PL7) transfer RNA synthetase autoantibodies along with a review of biopsy changes reported in the English literature are described. Most patients presented with dyspnea and cough, with myositis, skin changes including "mechanic's hands," and Raynaud phenomenon. Biopsy patterns of injury included usual interstitial pneumonia (n = 4), organizing pneumonia (n = 2), nonspecific interstitial pneumonia, and lymphoid interstitial pneumonia (n = 1 each), which, in a minority of instances, contrasted with predictions by thoracic radiologists based on high-resolution computed tomographic scans. This study emphasizes the integrated clinical, radiologic, and pathologic approach to interstitial lung disease, especially in connective tissue disorders, and points out the occurrence of usual interstitial pneumonia and organizing pneumonia in this patient group where nonspecific interstitial pneumonia has been the dominant pattern of clinical interest.
Stereotactic Ablative RadioTherapy (SABR) of lung tumors/metastases has been shown to be an effective treatment modality with low toxicity. Outcome and toxicity were retrospectively evaluated in a unique single-institution cohort treated with intensity-modulated image-guided breath-hold SABR (igSABR) without external immobilization. The dose-response relationship is analyzed based on Biologically Equivalent Dose (BED).
Gender dysphoria (also known as "transsexualism") is characterized as a discrepancy between anatomical sex and gender identity. Research points towards neurobiological influences. Due to the sexually dimorphic characteristics of the human voice, voice gender perception provides a biologically relevant function, e.g. in the context of mating selection. There is evidence for a better recognition of voices of the opposite sex and a differentiation of the sexes in its underlying functional cerebral correlates, namely the prefrontal and middle temporal areas. This fMRI study investigated the neural correlates of voice gender perception in 32 male-to-female gender dysphoric individuals (MtFs) compared to 20 non-gender dysphoric men and 19 non-gender dysphoric women. Participants indicated the sex of 240 voice stimuli modified in semitone steps in the direction to the other gender. Compared to men and women, MtFs showed differences in a neural network including the medial prefrontal gyrus, the insula, and the precuneus when responding to male vs. female voices. With increased voice morphing men recruited more prefrontal areas compared to women and MtFs, while MtFs revealed a pattern more similar to women. On a behavioral and neuronal level, our results support the feeling of MtFs reporting they cannot identify with their assigned sex.
Tourette syndrome (TS) is a neuropsychiatric disorder with the core phenomenon of tics, whose origin and temporal pattern are unclear. We investigated the When and Where of tic generation and resting state networks (RSNs) via functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI).
A primary function of cognitive control is to adjust the cognitive system according to situational demands. The so-called "conflict adaptation effect" elicited in laboratory experiments is supposed to reflect the above function. Neuroimaging studies suggest that adaptation of nonemotional conflict is mediated by the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex through a top-down enhancement of task-relevant (target), relative to task-irrelevant (distractor), stimulus representation in the sensory cortices. The adaptation of emotional conflict, on the other hand, is suggested to be related to the rostral anterior cingulate inhibiting the processing of emotional distractors through a top-down modulation of amygdala responsivity. In the present study, we manipulated, on a trial-by-trial basis, the levels of semantic interference conflict triggered by the incompatibility between emotional faces (targets) and emotional words (distractors) in a modified version of the emotional Stroop task. Similar to previous observations involving nonemotional interference effects, the behavioral adaptation of emotional conflict was found to be paralleled by a stronger recruitment of the fusiform face area. Additional areas related to the conflict adaptation effect were the bilateral insula, the bilateral frontal operculum (fO), the right amygdala, the left precentral and postcentral gyri, and the parietal cortex. These findings suggest that augmentation of cortical responses to task-relevant information in emotional conflict may be related to conflict adaptation processes in a way that has been observed in nonemotional conflict, challenging the view that brain circuitries underlying the conflict adaptation effect depend only on the nature of conflict. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved).
Self-concept is deeply affected in schizophrenia. Positive symptoms in particular are related to disturbed self/other distinctions. The neural networks underlying self-evaluation in schizophrenia have barely been investigated. The study reported here involved 13 patients with schizophrenia and 13 matched controls. During functional MRI, participants decided in three conditions whether the presented positive and negative personality traits characterized themselves, an intimate person, or included a certain letter. Based on the responses, each experimental condition was designed using a flexible factorial model. Controls and patients showed a similar behavioral pattern during self-evaluation, with group comparison revealing decreased activation in patients in the left inferior temporal gyrus and both temporal poles during self-ascription of traits, and in the anterior medial prefrontal cortex during evaluation of an intimate person. In patients, positive symptoms correlated positively with brain activation in the left parahippocampus during trait self-ascription. Hence, while evaluating themselves, schizophrenia patients revealed decreased activation in areas related to self-awareness overlapping with networks involved in theory of mind, empathy and social knowledge. Moreover, patients brain activation during self-reflection was affected by the current positive symptomatology. The close interaction between self and other highlights the clinical and social relevance of self-processing deficits in schizophrenia.
The therapeutic success of haloperidol in the treatment of Tourette syndrome (TS) put an end to the discussion about a "hysteric" or "neurotic" origin of TS. The cortico-striato-thalamo-cortical circuit has been identified as an underlying neurobiological correlate of TS. In this review we explore the main findings of structural alterations in TS including cortical areas, basal ganglia, hippocampus, amygdala, midbrain, and cerebellum. Based on the structural changes we examine the functional pattern described by the findings of fMRI and (15)O-PET/(18)FDG PET investigations. From the neuroimaging findings a cortical origin of the generation of tics is indicated. Future research on the neuronal footprint of TS should be directed towards addressing the question of which patterns of connectivity distinguish individuals in whom tics disappear during early adulthood from those in whom the tics persist. The understanding of this pathomechanism could provide a key on how to influence dysconnectivity in TS, for example, by more specific pharmaceutical intervention or by individually adopted EEG and/or fMRI neurofeedback.
The aim of the present study was to investigate the impact of part-whole (e.g., car-motor) and functional associations (e.g., car-garage) on single word (Experiment 1) and sentence production (Experiment 2). In Experiment 1, a classical picture-word task was used. In Experiment 2, the same stimuli and distractors were embedded into a sentence. The relation between target and distractor was either part-whole, functional or unrelated. At single word level, part-whole and functional relations facilitate naming. Additionally, the facilitation effect was stronger for part-whole in comparison to functional associations. During sentence production, facilitation shifted to interference. The difference between both relations disappeared. The findings of the different effects between functional and part-whole associations depend on the length of utterances and highlight the divergent impact of associations. The differences between part-whole and functional associations in single word production might reflect a differential organization of associative links at the conceptual level. In contrast, during sentence production the syntactic processing at the lexical level seem to be more important than types of semantic associations at the conceptual level.
Intraoperative radiotherapy (IORT) using the INTRABEAM(®) system promises a flexible use regarding radiation protection compared to other approaches such as electron treatment or HDR brachytherapy with (192)Ir or (60)Co. In this study we compared dose rate measurements of breast- and Kypho-IORT with C-arm fluoroscopy which is needed to estimate radiation protection areas.
The basis for different neural activations in response to male and female voices as well as the question, whether men and women perceive male and female voices differently, has not been thoroughly investigated. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to examine the behavioral and neural correlates of gender-related voice perception in healthy male and female volunteers. fMRI data were collected while 39 participants (19 female) were asked to indicate the gender of 240 voice stimuli. These stimuli included recordings of 3-syllable nouns as well as the same recordings pitch-shifted in 2, 4 and 6 semitone steps in the direction of the other gender. Data analysis revealed a) equal voice discrimination sensitivity in men and women but better performance in the categorization of opposite-sex stimuli at least in men, b) increased responses to increasing gender ambiguity in the mid cingulate cortex and bilateral inferior frontal gyri, and c) stronger activation in a fronto-temporal neural network in response to voices of the opposite sex. Our results indicate a gender specific processing for male and female voices on a behavioral and neuronal level. We suggest that our results reflect higher sensitivity probably due to the evolutionary relevance of voice perception in mate selection.
Patients with schizophrenia have semantic processing disturbances leading to expressive language deficits (formal thought disorder). The underlying pathology has been related to alterations in the semantic network and its neural correlates. Moreover, crossmodal processing, an important aspect of communication, is impaired in schizophrenia. Here we investigated specific processing abnormalities in patients with schizophrenia with regard to modality and semantic distance in a semantic priming paradigm. Fourteen patients with schizophrenia and fourteen demographically matched controls made visual lexical decisions on successively presented word-pairs (SOA = 350 ms) with direct or indirect relations, unrelated word-pairs, and pseudoword-target stimuli during fMRI measurement. Stimuli were presented in a unimodal (visual) or crossmodal (auditory-visual) fashion. On the neural level, the effect of semantic relation indicated differences (patients > controls) within the right angular gyrus and precuneus. The effect of modality revealed differences (controls > patients) within the left superior frontal, middle temporal, inferior occipital, right angular gyri, and anterior cingulate cortex. Semantic distance (direct vs. indirect) induced distinct activations within the left middle temporal, fusiform gyrus, right precuneus, and thalamus with patients showing fewer differences between direct and indirect word-pairs. The results highlight aberrant priming-related brain responses in patients with schizophrenia. Enhanced activation for patients possibly reflects deficits in semantic processes that might be caused by a delayed and enhanced spread of activation within the semantic network. Modality-specific decreases of activation in patients might be related to impaired perceptual integration. Those deficits could induce and increase the prominent symptoms of schizophrenia like impaired speech processing.
The German Association for Psychiatry and Psychotherapy (DGPPN) has committed itself to establish a prospective national cohort of patients with major psychiatric disorders, the so-called DGPPN-Cohort. This project will enable the scientific exploitation of high-quality data and biomaterial from psychiatric patients for research. It will be set up using harmonised data sets and procedures for sample generation and guided by transparent rules for data access and data sharing regarding the central research database. While the main focus lies on biological research, it will be open to all kinds of scientific investigations, including epidemiological, clinical or health-service research.
Emotional and non-emotional Stroop are frequently applied to study major depressive disorder (MDD). The versions of emotional Stroop used in previous studies were not, unlike the ones employed in the present study, based on semantic incongruence, making it difficult to compare the tasks.
Antisocial behavior and aggression are prominent symptoms in several psychiatric disorders including antisocial personality disorder. An established precursor to aggression is a frustrating event, which can elicit anger or exasperation, thereby prompting aggressive responses. While some studies have investigated the neural correlates of frustration and aggression, examination of their relation to trait aggression in healthy populations are rare. Based on a screening of 550 males, we formed two extreme groups, one including individuals reporting high (n=21) and one reporting low (n=18) trait aggression. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) at 3T, all participants were put through a frustration task comprising unsolvable anagrams of German nouns. Despite similar behavioral performance, males with high trait aggression reported higher ratings of negative affect and anger after the frustration task. Moreover, they showed relatively decreased activation in the frontal brain regions and the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (dACC) as well as relatively less amygdala activation in response to frustration. Our findings indicate distinct frontal and limbic processing mechanisms following frustration modulated by trait aggression. In response to a frustrating event, HA individuals show some of the personality characteristics and neural processing patterns observed in abnormally aggressive populations. Highlighting the impact of aggressive traits on the behavioral and neural responses to frustration in non-psychiatric extreme groups can facilitate further characterization of neural dysfunctions underlying psychiatric disorders that involve abnormal frustration processing and aggression.
Attentional deficits are prominent in schizophrenia, affecting nearly all cognitive functions. Human attention comprises three essential components: alerting, orienting and executive control. For the assessment of these functions, the attention network test (ANT) has been proposed and used in healthy controls and patients. In schizophrenia, the ANT has revealed behavioral deficits; however, the corresponding neural correlates have not been examined. In the present study, neural correlates of attention were investigated in 17 schizophrenia patients and 17 healthy controls using the ANT with fMRI. Behavioral deficits emerged in the alertness system with a reduced efficiency for temporal cues. In fMRI, changes were observed for all three domains-alerting, orienting and conflict-and revealed hyper- as well as hypoactivation in patients. Affected regions during alerting comprised a broad fronto-temporo-parieto-occipito-cerebellar network, while differences during orienting mainly tapped fronto-parietal regions and during conflict processing a thalamo-frontal-temporal occipital network including the postcentral regions. In general, hyperactivations were positively correlated with more severe psychopathologial symptoms.
Antipsychotics, cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), and omega-3-fatty acids have been found superior to control conditions as regards prevention of psychosis in people at-risk of first-episode psychosis. However, no large-scale trial evaluating the differential efficacy of CBT and antipsychotics has been performed yet. In PREVENT, we evaluate CBT, aripiprazole, and clinical management (CM) as well as placebo and CM for the prevention of psychosis in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial with regard to the antipsychotic intervention and a randomized controlled trial with regard to the CBT intervention with blinded ratings. The hypotheses are first that CBT and aripiprazole and CM are superior to placebo and CM and second that CBT is not inferior to aripiprazole and CM combined. The primary outcome is transition to psychosis. By November 2010, 156 patients were recruited into the trial. The subjects were substantially functionally compromised (Social and Occupational Functioning Assessment Scale mean score 52.5) and 78.3% presented with a Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition axis I comorbid diagnosis. Prior to randomization, 51.5% of the participants preferred to be randomized into the CBT arm, whereas only 12.9% preferred pharmacological treatment. First, assessments of audiotaped treatment sessions confirmed the application of CBT-specific skills in the CBT condition and the absence of those in CM. The overall quality rating of the CBT techniques applied in the CBT condition was good. When the final results of the trial are available, PREVENT will substantially expand the current limited evidence base for best clinical practice in people at-risk (prodromal) of first-episode psychosis.
Radiation induced secondary cancers are a rare but severe late effect after breast conserving therapy. Intraoperative radiotherapy (IORT) is increasingly used during breast conserving surgery. The purpose of this analysis was to estimate secondary cancer risks after IORT compared to other modalities of breast radiotherapy (APBI - accelerated partial breast irradiation, EBRT - external beam radiotherapy).
Successful human interaction is based on correct recognition, interpretation, and appropriate reaction to facial affect. In depression, social skill deficits are among the most restraining symptoms leading to social withdrawal, thereby aggravating social isolation and depressive affect. Dysfunctional approach and withdrawal tendencies to emotional stimuli have been documented, but the investigation of their neural underpinnings has received limited attention. We performed an fMRI study including 15 depressive patients and 15 matched, healthy controls. All subjects performed two tasks, an implicit joystick task as well as an explicit rating task, both using happy, neutral, and angry facial expressions. Behavioral data analysis indicated a significant group effect, with depressed patients showing more withdrawal than controls. Analysis of the functional data revealed significant group effects for both tasks. Among other regions, we observed significant group differences in amygdala activation, with patients showing less response particularly during approach to happy faces. Additionally, significant correlations of amygdala activation with psychopathology emerged, suggesting that more pronounced symptoms are accompanied by stronger decreases of amygdala activation. Hence, our results demonstrate that depressed patients show dysfunctional social approach and withdrawal behavior, which in turn may aggravate the disorder by negative social interactions contributing to isolation and reinforcing cognitive biases.
We studied the impact of lifestyle, body composition, different insulin sensitivity indices and the first insulin response in healthy pre- and post-menopausal women with a low cardiovascular risk profile (the EU-RISC study, Relationship between Insulin Sensitivity and Cardiovascular Disease (n = 51, 47 ± 4 years, body mass index 23.6 ± 3.7 kg/m(2), waist girth 79.2 ± 10.3 cm) on endothelial function (flow mediated arterial dilatation (FMD)), an early marker for atherosclerosis.
Schizophrenia is a neuropsychiatric disorder entailing progressive psychotic, cognitive and affective symptoms. Several imaging studies identified brain structure abnormalities in schizophrenia patients, particularly in fronto-temporal regions and evidence for progressive anatomical changes. Here, we synthesised these findings by quantitative coordinate-based meta-analysis, assessing regions of consistently reported brain structure changes, their physiological functions and the correlation of their likelihood with disease duration. The meta-analysis revealed four significant clusters of convergent grey matter reduction, while one cluster indicated higher grey matter values in patients. A voxel-wise analysis revealed a correlation between grey matter reduction and disease duration in the left anterior insula. Functional characterisation revealed significant association with reward, affective processing and language functions. The current analysis allowed the identification of consistent morphometric changes across a large sample of studies in regions that are associated with neurophysiological functions that are altered as hallmarks of schizophrenia psychopathology. The observation that the location of presumably progressive pathology is functionally linked to language and emotion is well in line with increasing deficits in these domains with disease progression in schizophrenia.
Depression is the most common mental disorder in patients suffering from Parkinsons disease (PD) with an average prevalence of about 40% to 50%. Depression in PD has a major impact on the patients health-related quality of life and caregivers distress. Although common depressive symptoms in PD are under-diagnosed and therefore often untreated in clinical practice. The aim of this study was to evaluate the current status of treatment in PD patients with depression in Germany and to develop approaches to improve awareness and therapy. The study was divided into three parts: 1. a pre-study to evaluate treatment patterns in a registry of PD patients with and without depressive symptoms, 2. a pilot trial to establish a valid and feasible questionnaire for patients with PD and depression, 3. main study: quality measurement by benchmarking in 14 centres followed by a final phase for developing an integrated algorithm for the treatment of PD patients with depression. In the main study only 27.6% of the patients received antidepressant therapy, and only 55% with moderate to severe depression were treated. Only seven patients received behavioural therapy. There were two groups: one with and the other without training and benchmark information. No significant difference could be detected between the two treatment arms. This study provided important data on the treatment of patients with PD and depression in Germany. There are a number of reasons for the observed lack of efficacy in this study. More studies are needed to develop an appropriate approach to performing benchmarking for the treatment of neurological disease.
Schizophrenia is a severe neuropsychiatric disorder with high heritability, though its exact etiopathogenesis is yet unknown. An increasing number of studies point to the importance of white matter anomalies in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia. While several studies have identified the impact of schizophrenia susceptibility gene variants on gray matter anatomy in both schizophrenia patients and healthy risk variant carriers, studies dealing with the impact of these gene variants on white matter integrity are still scarce. We here present a study on the effects of a Dysbindin schizophrenia susceptibility gene variant on fiber tract integrity in healthy young subjects. 101 subjects genotyped for Dysbindin-gene variant rs1018381, though without personal or first degree relative history of psychiatric disorders underwent diffusion tensor imaging (DTI), 83 of them were included in the final analysis. We used Tract-Based Spatial Statistics (TBSS) analysis to delineate the major fiber tracts. Carriers of the minor allele T of the rs1018381 in the Dysbindin gene showed two clusters of reduced fractional anisotropy (FA) values in the perihippocampal region of the right temporal lobe compared to homozygote carriers of the major allele C. Clusters of increased FA values in T-allele carriers were found in the left prefrontal white matter, the right fornix, the right midbrain area, the left callosal body, the left cerebellum and in proximity of the right superior medial gyrus. Dysbindin has been implicated in neurite outgrowth and morphology. Impairments in anatomic connectivity as found associated with the minor Dysbindin allele in our study may result in increased risk for schizophrenia due to altered fiber tracts.
Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) is an acquired syndrome characterised by cognitive decline not affecting activities of daily living. Using a quantitative meta-analytic approach, we aimed to identify consistent neuroanatomic correlates of MCI and how they are related to cognitive dysfunction. The meta-analysis enrols 22 studies, involving 917 MCI (848 amnestic MCI) patients and 809 healthy controls. Only studies investigating local changes in grey matter and reporting whole-brain results in stereotactic coordinates were included and analysed using the activation likelihood estimation approach. Probabilistic cytoarchitectonic maps were used to compare the localization of the obtained significant effects to histological areas. A correlation between the probability of grey matter changes and cognitive performance of MCI patients was performed. In MCI patients, the meta-analysis revealed three significant clusters of convergent grey matter atrophy, which were mainly situated in the bilateral amygdala and hippocampus, extending to the left medial temporal pole and thalamus, as well as in the bilateral precuneus. A sub-analysis in only amnestic MCI revealed a similar pattern. A voxel-wise analysis revealed a correlation between grey matter reduction and cognitive decline in the right hippocampus and amygdala as well as in the left thalamus. This study provides convergent evidence of a distinct neuroanatomical pattern in MCI. The correlation analysis with cognitive-mnestic decline further highlights the impact of limbic structures and the linkage with data from a functional neuroimaging database provides additional insight into underlying functions. Although different pathologies are underlying MCI, the observed neuroanatomical pattern of structural changes may reflect the common clinical denominator of cognitive impairment.
Navigation based on chemosensory information is one of the most important skills in the animal kingdom. Studies on odor localization suggest that humans have lost this ability. However, the experimental approaches used so far were limited to explicit judgements, which might ignore a residual ability for directional smelling on an implicit level without conscious appraisal.
Pencil-beam (PB) based dose calculation for treatment planning is limited by inaccuracies in regions of tissue inhomogeneities, particularly in situations with lateral electron disequilibrium as is present at tissue/lung interfaces. To overcome these limitations, a new "lateral disequilibrium inclusive" (LDI) PB based calculation algorithm was introduced. In this study, the authors evaluated the accuracy of the new model by film and ionization chamber measurements and Monte Carlo simulations.
Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are pervasive developmental disorders with characteristic core symptoms such as impairments in social interaction, deviance in communication, repetitive and stereotyped behavior, and impaired motor skills. Anomalies of brain structure have repeatedly been hypothesized to play a major role in the etiopathogenesis of the disorder. Our objective was to perform unbiased meta-analysis on brain structure changes as reported in the current ASD literature. We thus conducted a comprehensive search for morphometric studies by Pubmed query and literature review. We used a revised version of the activation likelihood estimation (ALE) approach for coordinate-based meta-analysis of neuroimaging results. Probabilistic cytoarchitectonic maps were applied to compare the localization of the obtained significant effects to histological areas. Each of the significant ALE clusters was analyzed separately for age effects on gray and white matter density changes. We found six significant clusters of convergence indicating disturbances in the brain structure of ASD patients, including the lateral occipital lobe, the pericentral region, the medial temporal lobe, the basal ganglia, and proximate to the right parietal operculum. Our study provides the first quantitative summary of brain structure changes reported in literature on autism spectrum disorders. In contrast to the rather small sample sizes of the original studies, our meta-analysis encompasses data of 277 ASD patients and 303 healthy controls. This unbiased summary provided evidence for consistent structural abnormalities in spite of heterogeneous diagnostic criteria and voxel-based morphometry (VBM) methodology, but also hinted at a dependency of VBM findings on the age of the patients.
One well-investigated division of attentional processes focuses on alerting, orienting and executive control, which can be assessed applying the attentional network test (ANT). The goal of the present study was to add further knowledge about the temporal dynamics of relevant neural correlates. As a right hemispheric dominance for alerting and orienting has previously been reported for intrinsic but not for phasic alertness, we additionally addressed a potential impact of this lateralization of attention by employing a lateralized version of the ANT, capturing phasic alertness processes. Sixteen healthy subjects underwent event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) while performing the ANT. Analyses of BOLD magnitude replicated the engagement of a fronto-parietal network in the attentional subsystems. The amplitudes of the attentional contrasts interacted with visual field presentation in the sense that the thalamus revealed a greater involvement for spatially cued items presented in the left visual field. Comparisons of BOLD latencies in visual cortices, first, verified faster BOLD responses following contra-lateral stimulus presentation. Second and more importantly, we identified attention-modulated activation in secondary visual and anterior cingulate cortices. Results are discussed in terms of bottom-up and lateralization processes. Although intrinsic and phasic alertness are distinct cognitive processes, we propose that neural substrates of intrinsic alertness may be accessed by phasic alertness provided that the attention-dominant (i.e., the right) hemisphere is activated directly by a warning stimulus.
Emotional processing is influenced by cognitive processes and vice versa, indicating a profound interaction of these domains. The investigation of the neural mechanisms underlying this interaction is not only highly relevant for understanding the organization of human brain function. Rather, it may also help in understanding dysregulated emotions in affective disorders and in elucidating the neurobiology of cognitive behavioural therapy (e.g. in borderline personality disorder), which aims at modulating dysfunctional emotion processes by cognitive techniques, such as restructuring. In the majority of earlier studies investigating the interaction of emotions and cognition, the main focus has been on the investigation of the effects of emotional stimuli or, more general, emotional processing, e.g. instituted by emotional material that needed to be processed, on cognitive performance and neural activation patterns. Here we pursued the opposite approach and investigated the modulation of implicit processing of emotional stimuli by cognitive demands using an event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging--study on a motor short-term memory paradigm with emotional interferences. Subjects were visually presented a finger-sequence consisting either of four (easy condition) or six (difficult condition) items, which they had to memorize. After a short pause positive, negative or neutral International affective picture system pictures or a green dot (as control condition) were presented. Subjects were instructed to reproduce the memorized sequence manually as soon as the picture disappeared. Analysis showed that with increasing cognitive demand (long relative to short sequences), neural responses to emotional pictures were significantly reduced in amygdala and orbitofrontal cortex. In contrast, the more difficult task evoked stronger activation in a widespread frontoparietal network. As stimuli were task-relevant go-cues and hence had to be processed perceptually, we would interpret this as a specific attenuation of affective responses by concurrent cognitive processing--potentially reflecting a relocation of resources mediated by the frontoparietal network.
Tourettes syndrome (TS) is a developmental neuropsychiatric disorder characterized by motor and vocal tics as well as psychiatric comorbidities. Disturbances of the fronto-striatal-thalamic pathways responsible for motor control and impulse inhibition have been previously described in other studies. Although differences in motor performance are well recognized, imaging data elucidating the neuronal correlates are scarce. Here, we examined 19 adult TS patients (13 men, aged 22-52 years, mean = 34.3 years) and 18 age- and sex-matched controls (13 men, aged 24-57 years, mean = 37.6 years) in a functional magnetic resonance imaging study at 1.5 T. We corrected for possible confounds introduced by tics, motion, and brain-structural differences as well as age, sex, comorbidities, and medication. Patients and controls were asked to perform a sequential finger-tapping task using their right, left, and both hands, respectively. Task performance was monitored by simultaneous MR-compatible video recording. Although behavioral data obtained during scanning did not show significant differences across groups, we observed differential neuronal activation patterns depending on both handedness (dominant vs. nondominant) and tapping frequency in frontal, parietal, and subcortical areas. When controlling for open motor performance, a failure of deactivation in easier task conditions was found in the subgenual cingulate cortex in the TS patients. In addition, performance-related functional connectivity of lower- and higher-order motor networks differed between patients and controls. In summary, although open performance was comparable, patients showed different neuronal networks and connectivity patterns when performing increasingly demanding tasks, further illustrating the impact of the disease on the motor system.
The paper reflects central recommendations and methodological issues of the new German guidelines for the treatment of depression, as discussed in the article New German Guidelines for the Treatment of Depression - The Central Role of Psychotherapy (Schauenburg et al. 2009). Members of the steering group for these guidelines disagree with the authors description in several points, especially with reference to the efficacy of pharmacotherapy with antidepressants and psychotherapy, as well as the relationship between both strategies of therapy and their combination in diverse phases of treatment (acute/maintenance). Furthermore, we try to clarify some misunderstandings in matters of the guidelines methodology which arose in the paper cited.
Mounting evidence shows that oxidative stress (OS) and the purine/adenosine system play a key role in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia. Lately, our group pointed out that not only antioxidants, but also the prooxidant system plays an important role in neuro-psychiatric disorders. Xanthine oxidase (XO) is an enzyme of special interest in this context, since it acts as a prooxidant, but its main product is a vastly important antioxidant, uric acid (UA). Furthermore, XO plays major part in the purine/adenosine metabolism, which has been hypothesised to play a role in schizophrenia as well.
Tourettes syndrome (TS) is a developmental neuropsychiatric disorder characterized by motor and vocal tics as well as psychiatric comorbidities. Recently, differences in maturation of cortical networks using functional connectivity metrics have been described for this disorder. However, adult data on subcortical networks are scarce. In particular, the connectivity of the amygdala, for which a role in the pathophysiology of TS has been established, has not been examined so far. We studied 15 adult TS patients (11 male, aged 30.4 ± 9.7y) and 15 age- and sex-matched controls (11 male, aged 32.0 ± 9.3y) in a functional magnetic resonance imaging study at 1.5T using a simple motor task. We corrected for possible confounds introduced by tics, motion and brain-structural differences as well as age, sex, and medication. Task performance was monitored by simultaneous MR-compatible video-recording. Data were analyzed using an independent component approach sensitive to functional connectivity patterns. A stable component comprising both amygdalae could be identified across all subjects. Additionally, we observed a highly significant increase in coupling between/within amygdalae in the TS group when compared to controls, although behavioral data obtained during scanning did not show significant differences. These findings are expected to add to our understanding of the functional architecture of Tourettes syndrome.
Depressive disorders are among the most common illnesses and reasons for obtaining health care. Their diagnosis and treatment are still in need of improvement. In Germany, a new S3/National Clinical Practice Guideline has been developed for this purpose.
Emotions are often encountered in a multimodal fashion. Consequently, contextual framing by other modalities can alter the way that an emotional facial expression is perceived and lead to emotional conflict. Whole brain fMRI data was collected when 35 healthy subjects judged emotional expressions in faces while concurrently being exposed to emotional (scream, laughter) or neutral (yawning) sounds. The behavioral results showed that subjects rated fearful and neutral faces as being more fearful when accompanied by screams than compared to yawns (and laughs for fearful faces). Moreover, the imaging data revealed that incongruence of emotional valence between faces and sounds led to increased activation in the middle cingulate cortex, right superior frontal cortex, right supplementary motor area as well as the right temporoparietal junction. Against expectations no incongruence effects could be found in the amygdala. Further analyses revealed that, independent of emotional valence congruency, the left amygdala was consistently activated when the information from both modalities was emotional. If a neutral stimulus was present in one modality and emotional in the other, activation in the left amygdala was significantly attenuated. These results indicate that incongruence of emotional valence in audiovisual integration activates a cingulate-fronto-parietal network involved in conflict monitoring and resolution. Furthermore in audiovisual pairing amygdala responses seem to signal also the absence of any neutral feature rather than only the presence of an emotionally charged one.
Negative emotion exerts a considerable influence on cognitive processes. This may have clinical implications in mental illnesses, such as schizophrenia, where negative emotions often prevail. Experimentally this influence can be studied by using olfactory emotion induction.
The current study aimed to investigate predictive markers for acute symptoms of depression and mania following deep brain stimulation (DBS) surgery of the subthalamic nucleus for the treatment of motor symptoms in Parkinsons disease (PD). Fourteen patients with PD (7 males) were included in a prospective longitudinal study. Neuropsychological tests, psychopathology scales and tests of motor functions were administered at several time points prior to and after neurosurgery. Pre-existing psychopathological and motor symptoms predicted postoperative affective side effects of DBS surgery. As these can easily be assessed, they should be considered along with other selection criteria for DBS surgery.
Approximately 30% of patients with cancer receive bone metastases, of which 50% are in the spine. Approximately 20% present with unstable lesions requiring surgical intervention, followed by fractionated radiotherapy over 2-4 weeks to prevent early regrowth. Because of the limited survival time of patients with metastatic cancer, novel treatment concepts shortening the overall treatment time or hospitalization are desirable. In this study, we established a novel approach for intraoperative radiotherapy during kyphoplasty (Kypho-IORT), a method that combines stabilizing surgery and radiotherapy within one visit, after estimating the percentage of eligible patients for this treatment.
Tourettes syndrome is characterised by motor and vocal tics as well as a high level of impulsivity and emotional dysregulation. Neuroimaging studies point to structural changes of the basal ganglia, prefrontal cortex and parts of the limbic system. However, there is no link between behavioural symptoms and the structural changes in the amygdala. One aspect of daily social interaction is the perception of emotional facial expressions, closely linked to amgydala function.
The aim of the present study was to assess the effect of age on cerebral correlates of olfactory induced negative emotions. We investigated 15 healthy women (aged 21-47) in a functional MRI (fMRI) study during passive smelling of one negative odor (rotten yeast) and two control conditions presenting a neutral odor (vanilla) and odorless ambient air. Besides odor-specific differences in ratings of valence (yeast less pleasant than vanilla and air), intensity (yeast more intense than vanilla and air), and arousal (yeast more arousing than vanilla and air), self-ratings verified the intended mood induction effect: subjects experienced more disgust during yeast stimulation compared to ambient air and vanilla. Along with the superior temporal cortex, medial, and lateral orbitofrontal activations were found to discriminate between negative and neutral olfactory stimulation (yeast and vanilla) directly. Activations of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and the caudate were correlated with age and showed stronger valence-related responses (yeast vs. vanilla) in younger compared to older women. Stronger BOLD signals within the anterior cingulate gyrus, insula and motor areas were found during negative compared to neutral stimulation and are considered to represent an attempt to down-regulate the strong emotional experience and the organisms preparation for withdrawal, respectively. Our results stress the role of orbitofrontal and superior temporal brain regions in odor-related valence coding and stress the necessity to consider age as a modulating factor for further studies, even in relatively young samples.
The following fMRI study aimed to characterize the neural correlates of explicit emotion discrimination in 17 patients with schizophrenia and 17 matched healthy controls. In patients, emotion recognition impairments were found to be paralleled by cerebral dysfunctions in the affective division of the anterior cingulate cortex, the bilateral dorsomedial prefrontal cortex, the right superior temporal gyrus and the right fusiform gyrus. While the patients responses to emotional faces were characterized predominantly by hypoactivations, the neutral faces elicited hyperactivations mainly in the frontal and cingulate areas, and the basal ganglia, along with misattribution errors. The decreased activation in the fusiform face area during responses to both emotional and neutral stimuli may be indicative of general face processing deficits. Similar although less pronounced deficits have been observed in subjects at high risk of psychosis as well as in patients with early onset. In adult schizophrenia, the evidence of an imbalanced cerebral network appears early in the course of the illness, with the dysfunctions, as indicated by correlations here, becoming more pronounced in patients with longer illness duration.
Treatment of Parkinsons disease is complicated by a high incidence of L-DOPA-induced dyskinesias (LID). Strategies to prevent the development of LID aim at providing more stable dopaminergic stimulation. We have previously shown that deuterium substitutions in the L-DOPA molecule (D3-L-DOPA) yield dopamine that appears more resistant to enzymatic breakdown. We here investigated the effects of D3-L-DOPA on motor performance and development of dyskinesias in a rodent model of Parkinsons disease. Through acute experiments, monitoring rotational behavior, dose-effect curves were established for D3-L-DOPA and L-DOPA. The equipotent dose of D3-L-DOPA was estimated to be 60% of L-DOPA. Subsequently, animals were treated with either the equipotent dose of D3-L-DOPA (5 mg/kg), the equivalent dose of D3-L-DOPA (8 mg/kg), L-DOPA (8 mg/kg) or vehicle. The equivalent dose of D3-L-DOPA produced superior anti-akinetic effects compared to L-DOPA in the cylinder test (p<0.05), whereas the equipotent dose of D3-L-DOPA produced an anti-akinetic effect similar to L-DOPA. Dyskinesias developed to the same degree in the groups treated with equivalent doses of D3-L-DOPA and L-DOPA. The equipotent dose of D3-L-DOPA induced fewer dyskinesias than L-DOPA (p<0.05). In conclusion, our study provides evidence for improved potency and reduced side-effects of L-DOPA by deuterium substitutions in the molecule. These results are of clinical interest since the occurrence of LID is related to the total L-DOPA dose administered. D3-L-DOPA may thus represent a novel strategy to reduce the total dose requirement and yet achieve an effective control of parkinsonian symptoms.
Tourette syndrome (TS) is a neuropsychiatric disorder with the cardinal symptoms of motor and vocal tics. The onset occurs during childhood; many patients experience a subsequent reduction of tic frequency and severity suggesting that the pathways involved play a significant developmental role. Research has mainly focused on the cortico-striato-thalamo-cortical circuit, but clinical symptoms and recent neuroimaging studies suggest the involvement of limbic structures as well. We acquired diffusion-weighted data at 1.5 T in fifteen adult patients fulfilling the DSM-IV-TR criteria for TS and in a healthy control group. Based on the Harvard-Oxford subcortical structural atlas we investigated the microstructure of grey matter nuclei such as the nucleus accumbens, the amygdala, the putamen, the pallidum and the thalamus. The basal ganglia and the thalamus show in the direct comparison between patients and control subjects no significant differences in the diffusion indices. However, within the Tourette group the correlation coefficients between diffusion parameters and measures of tic severity indicate that the individual microstructure of the basal ganglia has an influence on the individual clinical phenotype. The microstructure assessment of the amygdala and nucleus accumbens in TS revealed a significant difference for the left nucleus accumbens and the right amygdala. Our findings suggest two pathophysiologic patterns in TS. One pattern could indicate altered connectivity based on the correlation between the increased mean and axial diffusivity in the basal ganglia and tic severity. The other pattern is characterized by the increase in radial diffusivity in the amygdala and the correlation between radial diffusivity in the nucleus accumbens and tic measures indicating potentially altered myelination.
Sickness leave is a major source of societal costs in depression treatment. However, very little is known about the rationale behind sick leave and their effects on depressive symptoms. Aim of the paper is to evaluate the effect of sick leave on treatment outcome and the association of sick leave with patient, depression and treatment-related factors. For this we compared patients with sick leave and non-sick leave regarding symptom reduction following 6 weeks of treatment. A total of 118 patients of 41 physicians in a controlled clinical trial with a naturalistic prospective design were analysed. After 8 weeks of treatment no significant differences were found between patients who had or did not have sick leave, in terms of improvement of depressive symptoms. The analyses of physician, patient and illness-related variables regarding their predictive value showed no significant effect. No systematic effect of sick leave and no clear criteria were found that were related to receiving a sick leave certificate. It can be assumed that physicians do not only base the decision of whether to sign a depressive patient off sick on illness-specific factors. For a targeted implementation of sick leave as therapeutic measure predictors for effectiveness should be defined.
Oxidative stress (OS), is defined as an imbalance of pro- and antioxidants, leading to increased production of free radicals, which can lead to cell damage and death, has been postulated as important factors in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimers disease (AD). Most research has concentrated on the antioxidant system, for the first time, this proof of concept study examines the prooxidant system by investigating kinetic parameters of the free radical producing enzyme xanthine oxidase directly in post mortem brain tissue.
The "self-reference effect" describes better memory for material someone has related to ones self previously. Schizophrenia can affect aspects of the inner self such as own thoughts or actions. Schizophrenia symptoms, therefore, might not only have an influence on the self-concept, including the self-attribution of positive or negative personality traits, but also reduce the self-reference effect. 15 schizophrenia patients and 15 matched healthy controls were asked to decide on positive and negative personality traits across three separate conditions: self-evaluation, other evaluation (of an intimate person), and during a lexical control task, respectively. An unannounced recognition task followed. Patients revealed a negative bias in the evaluation of themselves and of the well-known other person. The reference to a person (oneself, close other) increased later recognition performance. However, patients with schizophrenia revealed an overall decreased recognition performance. The amount of patients passivity symptoms, i.e., an increase in the permeability of their "self-other boundary", correlated negatively with their recognition performance for previously self-referred characteristics and traits referred to the intimate other. This was not the case for lexically processed stimuli or an increase of negative symptoms. Our data underline the necessity of taking into account symptom subgroups when dealing with specific cognitive dysfunctions in schizophrenia.
Facilitation of emotional face recognition is an established phenomenon for audiovisual crossmodal stimulation, but not for other sensory modalities. The present study used a crossmodal priming task to identify brain systems controlling olfactory-visual interactions during emotion processing. BOLD fMRI was acquired for 44 healthy subjects during an emotional face discrimination task preceded by an emotionally valenced odorant. Behavioral performance showed that recognition of disgusted faces was improved by the presentation of an olfactory stimulus irrespective of its emotional valence. No such facilitation was seen for other facial expressions. The neuroimaging data showed a selective default network responsivity to emotional faces which was modulated by odor condition. Among disgust faces, hypoactivations during trials preceded by odorants indicated the presence of priming effects. Consistent with studies investigating the brain systems associated with audiovisual emotional integration, activity modulations in clusters in fusiform gyrus, middle frontal and middle cingulate gyrus corresponded to the observed behavioral facilitation. Our study further shows modulation of signal in the anterior insula during trials combining negatively valenced odor and disgusted faces, suggesting a modality-specific mechanism for integration of the disgust response and olfaction. These results indicate the presence of a central network with modality-specific and -unspecific components modulating emotional face recognition.
Hypereosinophilic syndromes (HES) are a heterogeneous group of conditions that are characterized by tissue-associated eosinophilic inflammation and peripheral eosinophilia. Although clinical and radiologic features associated with most forms of eosinophilic lung diseases are relatively well-described, there is little known regarding lung involvement in HES. The aims of the present study were to ascertain the frequency of pulmonary involvement in HES and define associated clinical and radiologic features.
The startle reflex provides a unique tool for the investigation of sensorimotor gating and information processing. Simultaneous EMG-fMRI acquisition (i.e., online stimulation and recording in the MR environment) allows for the quantitative assessment of the neuronal correlates of the startle reflex and its modulations on a single trial level. This serves as the backbone for a startle response informed fMRI analysis, which is fed by data acquired in the same brain at the same time. We here present the first MR study using a single trial approach with simultaneous acquired EMG and fMRI data on the human startle response in 15 healthy young men. It investigates the neural correlates for isolated air puff startle pulses (PA), prepulse-pulse inhibition (PPI), and prepulse facilitation (PPF). We identified a common core network engaged by all three conditions (PA, PPI, and PPF), consisting of bilateral primary and secondary somatosensory cortices, right insula, right thalamus, right temporal pole, middle cingulate cortex, and cerebellum. The cerebellar vermis exhibits distinct activation patterns between the startle modifications. It is differentially activated with the highest amplitude for PPF, a lower activation for PA, and lowest for PPI. The orbital frontal cortex exhibits a differential activation pattern, not for the type of startle response but for the amplitude modification. For pulse alone it is close to zero; for PPI it is activated. This is in contrast to PPF where it shows deactivation. In addition, the thalamus, the cerebellum, and the anterior cingulate cortex add to the modulation of the startle reflex.
Asbestosis is one of many forms of diffuse interstitial pulmonary fibrosis. Its histologic diagnosis rests on the pattern of fibrosis and the presence of asbestos bodies by light microscopy in lung biopsies.
Instable and painful vertebral metastases in patients with progressive visceral metastases present a common therapeutic dilemma. We developed a novel approach to deliver intraoperative radiotherapy (IORT) during kyphoplasty and report the first treated case.
Tourette syndrome is a neuropsychiatric disorder with the cardinal symptoms of motor and vocal tics. Often tics are accompanied by comorbidities such as obsessive-compulsive disorder, attention-deficit-hyperactivity disorder or depression. Research has mainly focused on the cortico-striato-thalamo circuit, but clinical symptoms and recent neuroimaging studies reporting altered resting network connectivity have suggested abnormalities in Tourette syndrome beyond the major motor circuits. We acquired diffusion-weighted data at 1.5T in nineteen adult patients fulfilling the DSM-IV-TR criteria for Tourette syndrome and in a healthy control group. Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) analysis in our adult TS sample shows a decrease of FA and increase in radial diffusivity in the corticospinal tract. There are widespread changes (reduced FA and increased radial diffusivity) in the anterior and posterior limb of the internal capsule. Furthermore, it confirms prior findings of altered interhemispheric connectivity as indicated by a FA-decrease in the corpus callosum. In addition, our results indicate that TS is not restricted to motor pathways alone but affects association fibres such as the inferior fronto-occipitalis fascicle, the superior longitudinal fascicle and fascicle uncinatus as well. Tics are the hallmark of Tourette syndrome, so the involvement of the corticospinal tract fits in well with clinical symptoms. Cortical regions as well as limbic structures take part in the modulation of tics. Our findings of alterations in long association fibre tracts and the corpus callosum are a potential source for hindered interhemispheric and transhemispheric interaction. The change in radial diffusivity points toward a deficit in myelination as one pathophysiological factor in Tourette syndrome.
Related JoVE Video
Journal of Visualized Experiments
What is Visualize?
JoVE Visualize is a tool created to match the last 5 years of PubMed publications to methods in JoVE's video library.
How does it work?
We use abstracts found on PubMed and match them to JoVE videos to create a list of 10 to 30 related methods videos.
Video X seems to be unrelated to Abstract Y...
In developing our video relationships, we compare around 5 million PubMed articles to our library of over 4,500 methods videos. In some cases the language used in the PubMed abstracts makes matching that content to a JoVE video difficult. In other cases, there happens not to be any content in our video library that is relevant to the topic of a given abstract. In these cases, our algorithms are trying their best to display videos with relevant content, which can sometimes result in matched videos with only a slight relation.